The lunar new year is still one month away, but for many Chinese, the celebrations can never begin too early. A buying frenzy has descended ahead of the Year of the Monkey. CCTV’s Xu Geng reports from Beijing.

Stamp collectors across China are lining up for the first crack at the Monkey stamp. There are 12 animals in the Chinese zodiac, and the monkey has always been a popular animal.

China issues a special set of stamps are every year in January in honor of the lunar new year.

For collectors, the designer is what makes this year’s collection so popular. Huang Yongyu is a renowned painter, and the father of China’s first ever set of Chinese new year stamps, which were also monkey-themed, and issued in 1980.

“I’m making it hilarious, a monkey with a peach and hanging on the trees,” Huang said.

His designs even echo China’s latest national policy allowing for two children per couple, and shows two monkey babies with their mothers.

Chinese people believe that those born in the year of the monkey are successful and good at making deals, and they don’t mind spending a lot to bring a bit of monkey-business into their home.

The price of the stamps has risen 150,000 times since the 1980 release.